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Spring Reign - Ninkasi Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Spring ReignSpring Reign

Educational use only; do not reuse.

99 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 99
Hads: 256
Avg: 3.57
pDev: 12.61%
Wants: 10
Gots: 36 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 02-13-2009

Ninkasi website:
"6% alc./vol. 38 ibus."
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 99 | Hads: 256
Photo of Phelps
3.9/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a large snifter-style glass.

Pumpkin-orange, hazed with tiny, visible particles. A hard pour delivers a dense, creamy head of off-white that sticks around for a long time and grips the glass in large-bubbled trails.

Smells like spring. Grass, floral notes, lots of honey and a touch of citrus. Good, bright balance of sweet malt and hops.

Subtle toasty malt quickly becomes sweeter and honeyed. Caramel and toasted biscuits emerge more as the brew warms. Grass, citrus pith and floral hops blend with orange before a crisp finish.

Fairly big body — about medium before some silky fizz lightens things up. Carbonation is mild and pinching. Finishes squeaky-clean.

A bright, well-balanced ale; tasty and nicely hopped for a blonde. Probably best in spring, but also thoroughly enjoyable in the summer, when I had it.

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Photo of CookstLiquor
3.89/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 650ml bottle. Pours a deep yellow with orange highlights. Nose has lots of lemony hops.Very fresh and clean smelling. Taste is similar with lemon hop notes right up front. There’s good strong bitterness and generic malty sweetness as well. Tastes a bit like an ale version of a maibock.

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Photo of thegodfather1076
3.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Awesome label with the Ninkasi Seal Decorated in spring pastel flowers. Great color scheme!! Eye-catching!!

Appearance: Poured from a 22oz bomber into a 16oz English Pint. Pours out a clear golden amber color with an airy 2 finger white foam head. Head retention was 2min 43sec before settling into a very frothy foam cap. Excellent lacing!! Has bits of sediment floating around.

Smell/Aroma: Smells citrus and a grass-like aroma, slight hints of honey sweetness can be detected as well. A toasty malt aroma is hidden between the rest. Has a very clean and fresh smell.

Flavor/Taste: Tastes of grassy-earthy hops right away making for a bitter front-end. Toasty bread-like malt along with a slight honey sweetness dominate the mid-section of this beer. The bitterness resurfaces on the back-end, though much more floral in nature at this point. Interesting.

MouthFeel: On the light side of Medium-bodied and finishes a bit dry.

Drinkability: Moderately carbonated, crisp, and refreshing. Very drinkable!!

Overall/Comments: This was my first time having this and I came away thinking that this would be a very solid choice in late spring/early summer. Another solid beer from Ninkasi!! Classified as an American Blond Ale at 6% ABV. Spring Seasonal Release. Reviewed and Consumed 9/20/12.

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Photo of sam_bliss
3.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a dark blonde color with a little white head on top. Smells super citrusy, yet full malts come through in the nose as well. The typical white grapefruit and evergreen hop tastes that we associate with Ninkasi are not restrained in this brew. Some roasted flavors combined with caramel and pale malts to provide a much stronger grain presence and bigger body than most blondes. This one is an American blonde that is not wimpy. One shade blonder than SNPA, with a hint of classic Ninkasi.

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Photo of industrialswill
3.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found this at Riteaid for $3.25.
Amber with off white head.
Not the most aromatic...smells like ale.
Nice, balanced flavor. This was a nice reward for a long, hard day slaving in the yard.
I rate this one a solid "GOOD" and would recommend it to anyone curious about trying a slightly bitter, hoppy beer.

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Photo of mtrentm
3.87/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 into a pint glass.

A: Golden/amber color with a slight haze. Has a thin white head with good lacing.

S: Citrus hop aroma with floral notes lingering in the background.

T: Nice fresh & crisp, grapefruit flavors upfront, with a smooth malt balance middle, finishing with a nice hop kick. (Pretty hoppy for a blonde) Gotta love Oregon & our hoppy brews!!!

M: Smooth & dry mouthfeel, meduim-bodied with a long finish.

D: Very drinkable brew, will be enjoying more of this for sure!

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Photo of Reidrover
3.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber. Bright amber/orange in colour, good sized off white head. Lots of citic hoppiness in the aroma ,backed by a good malt. Flavour is very lemony /orange hoppiness, bright and breezy, though you can tell the malt backing underneath is strong and consistent. Nice mouthfeel..great hoppy after taste. Very nice, excellent strong pale.

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Photo of AaronHomoya
3.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks again to Matthew Wilson for this one. This spring ale has been sitting around for a while now, and it may be bottle conditioned, as it gushed just a bit when finally opened.

It's got a nice appearance, with an amber color and a great slightly off-white head. Nice retention keeps a thin cap all the way through. A little cloudy, but I don't mind.

Interesting aroma. Honey malt, spicy, floral hops, and a sour, catty note too. I can see the "vomit" descriptor. I like it, though.

Flavor starts out sweet, honey malt again, grassy, grapefruit hops, a bit of bread in the finish but mostly bitter, spicy hopes. There's some sourness in the flavor again.

Medium-light body. Dry finish, but mouthwatering at the same time. Very nice.

Overall, it is a little unbalanced and doesn't seem to match the style it claims, but I really like it nonetheless. Would love to try it again fresh.

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Photo of dgilks
3.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear golden colour with a creamy off-white head. Fair head retention.

Light grainy malt aroma with a touch of grassy hop character.

Clean and smooth malt with moderate bitterness. Not much hop flavour but what there is is grassy. Nonetheless, a very easy drinking sessionable ale.

Medium-light body with moderate carbonation.

A balanced sessionable ale with just a touch of hop. Great summer beer.

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Photo of ScreamForMe
3.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap last week...

Not being much of a hop oriented BA, I tried this for the heck of it.

Imperial pint pour.

A good 1 inch head with some lacing. Moderate hop aroma coming from the glass.

Taste was very smooth. A good balance of hop and malt for a non hop head. Very drinkable.

I would drink this again on draft if I was in the mood....

Next review!

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Photo of MaltsOfGlory
3.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Loads of carbonation in this beer. It looks like a spring (blonde) ale should look like, light and crisp, the color is golden yellow, or blonde if you will. It is a little hazy, you can't see through it really at all, which is surprisingly nice. The head is a nice two fingers and it is sticking around for a while, it looks fluffy and pillowy, and completely white. The appearance on this is pretty impressive. The smell is nice, it smells like spring! It just smells super refreshing and nice and crisp. It has a nice light hop smell and a sweet malty finish on the smell as well. It also smells a little citrusy and it might have some floral notes as well. A little complex, but not too much on the smell, either way it smells nice! Not as much flavor as I would have liked on the taste. The hops and malts are really skimping out on this beer. I mean that is kinda to be expected because it is a blonde ale, but it's a little more than I would have liked. On the plus side it is very refreshing, and it has some nice citrus characteristics and some flowery taste to it. It tastes like spring to me, which is really nice, I just wish there was more of that flavor all around. Overall, tasty, but I wish they increased all the flavors one notch! Mouthfeel is pretty good, normal for a blonde ale, and the drinkability is very high, higher than I should give it credit for, the taste would indicate low drinkability, but since I want more of that flavor that I'm only getting a little bit of, and because it's very crisp and refreshing, it just makes me want more and more of it. Overall, a well done beer, not too impressive on the taste, but it is so crisp and refreshing that it makes me want to give it a good grade.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.82/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours a clear, golden orange color with an off-white, finger width head. Fair retention, leaving behind a broken layer of microbubbles on the surface. Lacing is spotty with good stick.

Smell - Floral aroma; touches on bready, toasty malts.

Taste - Moderate amount of lightly toasted biscuit upfront, played off nicely by a relatively strong grassy and slightly citric hop presence that rides out into the finish. Touches on honey. Simple, but assertive. Leaves a mild, lingering lemon/orange pith bitterness on the tongue.

Mouthfeel - Light in body with lively carbonation. Goes down nice and easy.

Overall - I don't know that this fits your classic description of an American Blonde; the flavor hits much closer to an American Pale to me. Regardless, it's another solid effort from Ninkasi, and a definite winner for a spring seasonal release.

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Photo of cbarrett4
3.8/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz bottle into Nonic. Tasted several times from tap with consistent results.

I find this brew a little odd... it is labeled as a blonde ale, but is actually a little heavier and more intense than 'blonde' ale would suggest.

A - Good amber hue (already looking like anything except blonde ale), medium head, average lace.

S - lots of malty roasted goodness... again blonde ale?

T - tastes like a pale ale or amber ale, lots of malts and a hint of spice and hops.

M - Medium+ bodied with a thick texture. Again, seems a little rich for being a blonde...

D - Pretty good and decently balanced, but you have to think of this as either an amber or pale ale then you get it.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.8/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Taken from notes on 4.17.11

22oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a cloudy orange with a fizzy white head. Very lively.

S - Malty, sweet, and floral.

T - Tastes like a bold lager - Malty but crisp and floral.

D - Drinks light, slight bitterness.

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Photo of sklafia
3.79/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.25

I bought and tasted this beer in March to toast the welcome of the Spring season. I enjoyed it and shared it with my family. Here is my review:

Visual: Total (5/6)
It was an amber color, yet still not quite opaque (1/2).
The clarity was lacking and there was unexpected cloudiness (2/2).
The head retention was good, but there was not as much visible carbonation as I had expected. The head was egg-shell white and when poured it was about half an inch thick. It dissipated quickly (2/2).

Aroma: Total (4/6)
There was an unexpected funky smell at first, but also some bright citrus notes and a hint of freshly cut grass. There was also a scent of malty sweetness from the grain (1/2).
The bouquet had a sweet and astringent hoppy floral quality with citrus (1/2).
Smell was reminiscent of a citrus grove with no off-odors (2/2).

Taste: Total (8/10)
The flavor was extremely balanced for an American Pale Ale with some lingering bitterness but floral flavors (2/2).
There were not any off flavors (2/2).
The mouthfeel was effervescent and pulled moisture without being drying. It was very light-bodied (2/2).
The tail left a distinct yet pleasant lingering sensation (1/2).
As far as carbonation, the bubbles were extremely small and not plentiful. I hoped for more (1/2).

Overall: Total (21/25)
I appreciated the American Pale Ale and it was a good representation of the style, as it was well-balanced. I would try it again and pair it with a dish like a steak salad, which I imagine would cut the fattiness and complement the citrus.

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Photo of BDJake
3.78/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

After receiving much flack from many BA's on my original review, I recently picked up another bottle to give a more fair review on a fresh product. Here's round two:

A- Pours a mostly clear apricot-orange with a fluffy head that retained and laced well.

S- Hoppy up front with an underlying touch of sweetness.

T- Piney, citrusy hops with a nice malt backbone to it.

M- Light body with lively combination and a dry finish.

D- Pretty good, although a blonde it is not- a pale more like it.

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Photo of ssteakley
3.73/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I agree with BierJager89 But, I like it because it is a Spring Brew, it should be lighter. Great for a Seattle Spring day. this would be good for any social gathering celebrating the PNW spring and a great time to see how friends like it! It really helps to try this one on a Real Spring Day, especially after drinking all those fine winter ales!

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Photo of Azurescens
3.73/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle with no bottled on or freshness date poured into Maudite stemmed glass, reviewed on 4/27/11

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden orange with whitish head, decent retention leaving some lacing around glass.

S: Sweet pale malts and herbal hops. Fresh simple and refreshing.

T: Very fresh and crisp, pale malts balanced with herbal hops. A refreshing taste of spring. Tastes pretty much like it smells, a bit sweeter than the nose and a lingering herbal hop taste after each sip.

M: Crisp light body with good carbonation, starts slightly sweet and finishes dry.

O: Solid spring ale from Ninkasi, no real complaints here. Good drinkability, really refreshing.

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Photo of cole2
3.72/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Great golden-orange color. Weak one-finger head; poor retention.

S: Floral hops with some roasted malt. Smells like its name would suggest.

T: Good floral bitterness with more caramel than hit the nose. Otherwise it's got some bready malts. The bitterness sticks around awhile.

M: Moderate carbonation and maybe slightly heavier than other blondes. Still pretty light-bodied.

O: At 6% abv this is not quite the session beer it claims to be, but it's very easy to drink and tastes pretty good. Wouldn't turn down a free pint, but it's not Ninkasi's best.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.71/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A neat little dark yellow to orange gem. Big foam head, great retention, even smelled like spring, flowers and a nice sweet yeast component.

Taste, great honey and floral hop complexity to a very light feeling beer in a good way. The slightest feel of apples and maybe even cinammon (its not just for winter beers). A great hot weather, working outdoors, swimming, shooting beer. And for $3.50, you can't go wrong. Check it out.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.69/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a hazy orange with a foamy tan head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, floral, and citrus fruit aromas. Taste is much the same with citrus zest, earth, floral, and slight herbal hop flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a nice mix of citrus and floral hop characteristics all around.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.68/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is a clear copper-amber color with a centimeter of resilient, sticky foam. The aroma combines caramel malt and flowery hops. The body is medium in body as sweet and grainy malt spill into a moist center. The mixture of hops is pleasant with both pine and citrus notes. This is a nice drinkable beer. I am not sure about the American Blonde Ale category, though. This beer reminds me more of an American Pale Ale.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.67/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Dogfish Head pint glass. Pours a medium golden amber with a half finger white head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of lightly toasted and biscuit malt, faint hops, reminiscent of a light pilsner. Flavor of mild bready and biscuit malt, sligthly nutty, finishing with dry bittering hops with light herabl notes. Medium bodied. Flavors are appropriate for a light Spring ale; but nothing really stands out and could use slightly more hop flavor to balance the bitterness in the finish. A nice dinner beer with pleasant maltiness.

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Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
3.67/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Vigorous pours yields less than an inch of head, which rapidly recedes. Color is orangey with just a hint of haze.

Citrus and grassy hops on the nose.

Grassy hops, earthy tones on the mouth. Bit of pepper. There's a lingering bitterness.

Nice medium-low carbonation. Feels kinda thick for what it is.

I'm not really sure what an American Blonde Ale is supposed to be, other than a marketing gimmick. I feel it's too hoppy for the style, and consequently would make a better pale ale. Not a bad beer at all.

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.66/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

For a spring beer, this is a surprisingly dark color. Closer to orange amber than yellow, this beer is capped with a dense, off-white head with excellent retention and lacing. The nose is disappointing. Toasted malt, biscuit and chalky Cascade hops (grapefruit pith, moderate grapefruit zest) as well as a little bit of pine and a touch of other citrus notes.

The palate opens moderately bitter and surprisingly astringent. It drinks closer to an APA than a blonde ale, with the bitterness being fresh, pungent and with a blend of a German herbal/minty/spicy hop flavors and a secondary American citrus character. The malt character is less noticeable here, with a blend of biscuit and toast. Mildly sweet and moderately oily on the finish, this beer is medium-light in body and slightly over-carbonated. The finish has a lingering bitterness that's quite pleasing, with an herbal/minty character. Alcohol is well-hidden, but in all honesty, there's no reason this beer couldn't be brewed at 4.5% - just look at Victory's Summer Love, which combines German hops and a blonde ale remarkably well. Solid.

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Spring Reign from Ninkasi Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 99 ratings.